Two Countries, No Home


When we hear the term “DREAMers” today, we often think of a group of young immigrants brought to the U.S. without documentation by their parents. However, there is another group of Dreamers—those brought to the U.S. as children who return to their native country.

Some are deported and others leave voluntarily. This New York Times Op-Doc follows Rufino Santiz Díaz, who grew up in Georgia, where he graduated from high school. But with no documentation in the U.S., he thought he’d have a better chance of getting into college in his native Mexico. So, in 2010, he returned to his hometown of Chiapas, where he thought his American education would prove a valuable asset.

That has not been the case. And his decision to leave the United States cost him his eligibility for DACA (Deferred Action for Child Arrivals), which President Obama passed two years later in 2012.

Today, he struggles to find meaningful work and provide for his family. His story highlights the more complex reality of today’s immigrants and the failure of immigration laws to adapt to this reality.

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